Sustainable building means that in the planning, building construction and utilization phase of a building the focus is on the protection of environment and resources and the benefit for people and society. However, economic potentials shall also be utilised with sustainable building.
So-called building certification systems implement the principles of sustained building in a total concept and assess the eco logical, social and economical quality of buildings quantitatively. National building certification systems are meanwhile in place in almost all countries of the globe. In Germany the assessment system of the German Sustainable Building Council (DGNB) as well as the American LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) system – which is spreading also in many other countries – have become widely accepted. The British building certification system BREEAM (Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method) is sometimes also used in Germany.
In general, very many different criteria are thus established for buildings. In DGNM System, the building must meet requirements, amongst others, on life cycle costs, area utilisation, accessibility, sound insulation and consumption of resources, to mention only a few examples. The more criteria are complied with, the better the total score of the building and the better the claims of the building, e. g. with DGNB Gold, Silver or Platinum.
Especially the building products used contribute at a relevant degree to the assessment of the structure. The choice of product is therefore very important, but not always easy. Processors or manufacturers are often required here to provide respective proof. With installation materials, interior emission is primarily important for building certification: